Converting centimeters to meters is a straightforward exercise. All too often, people stumble when arranging their centimeters in a cube. These two example problems will show the best way to convert cm3 to m3 and back again.
The conversion factor between cm3 to m3 is
1,000,000 cm3 = 1 m3
106 cm3 = 1 m3
How do you get that? Start with the conversion from cm to m.
100 cm = 1 m
A cubic meter is a cube 1 meter wide, 1 meter deep and 1 meter tall.
1 m3 = 1 m x 1 m x 1 m
Substitute the conversion factor for meter to centimeter
1 m3 = (100 cm) x (100 cm) x (100 cm)
1 m3 = 1,000,000 cm3 = 106 cm3
cm3 to m3 Conversion Example Problem
Q: How many cubic meters are in 250,000 cubic centimeters?
Multiply the conversion factor to the 250,000 cm3. Put the unit you want to be canceled out in the denominator.
This arrangement allows us to cancel out the unnecessary units, leaving only the unit we want.
0.25 m3 = x m3
Answer: 250,000 cm3 is equal to 0.25 m3.
m3 to cm3 Conversion Example Problem
Q: How many cubic centimeters are in 5 cubic meters?
Multiply the conversion factor to the 5 m3. Put the unit you want to be canceled out in the denominator.
This setup allows us to cancel out the unneeded m3 units.
5 x 106 cm3 = x cm3
A: There are 5 x 106 (5 million) cubic centimeters in 5 cubic meters.